Posts Tagged ‘parkrun’

Chevin Forest parkrun

Sunday, September 19th, 2021 | Sport

First time at Chevin Forest parkrun. It’s beautiful. Every time I go there I think I should go there more often. The parkrun course is pretty hilly but no worse than Temple Newsam. Muddy, though, even in summer, so it is going to be a challenging course in winter. Great to see plenty of fellow HPHers there, too. And I’ve increased my Wilson Index to 4.

Andover parkrun

Tuesday, September 7th, 2021 | Sport

Last weekend, we headed down to Wiltshire for a Questars race. However, as my start time was not until noon, we headed over for a cheeky parkrun in Andover. I successfully managed to take it easy (for my newfound speed, anyway) and took 26 minutes to get around. It’s a nice course: flat and reasonable scenic. Very well organised and marshalled, too. Thank you to all of the volunteers that made it a lovely experience.

Junior parkrun

Monday, August 30th, 2021 | Family & Parenting

Yesterday, Venla ran her first junior parkrun. The junior parkrun events are set over 2 kilometres and in such a way that children can run by themselves as there are marshalls watching them at all points. It is open to children from 4-14 years old.

I wasn’t sure how she would cope with the distance. She has no problem covering longer distances but usually, that is walking and with plenty of breaks. But she ran most of the way and finished in 15:57. Great work, Venla!

parkrun PB and Leeds Dock swimming

Wednesday, August 18th, 2021 | Sport

Last Saturday, Leeds Dock opened up for open water swimming. Jp, Graeme and I completed Woodhouse Moor parkrun then headed down for a dip.

As it was only my third parkrun back, and I have got a lot speedier since I ran a 22:06 in 2018. So, without meaning to but simply trying to keep JP in sight ahead of me, I ran a PB of 21:05. I think I could go faster as I was held up at the start, but I don’t want to pretend I wasn’t working hard!

I would sum up the swim at Leeds Dock as cold. But nice. I am dubious of their self-admitted guesses that it was 17 degrees. I would have guessed at 15-16 but could be mistaken. Once I was swimming, though, it wasn’t too bad. It was mostly the initial getting in and warming up as it was jumping in or use the ladder: no gentle bay area like you get at the Blue Lagoon.

They have a 240-metre loop and there were only a few other swimmers in the water so no traffic to navigate. The water was clean and weed-free. You couldn’t see the bottom but that’s true of basically everywhere I have swum.

parkrun is back!

Monday, July 26th, 2021 | Sport

After months and months of allowing people to cough all over each other as a sacrifice to the gods of the economy, we’re finally allowed to get fit again.

Virtual parkrun PB attempt

Saturday, April 25th, 2020 | Sport

The lockdown seems like a good excuse to do some fast running. And, now that I have decided that I can live with the Nike Next%, I was eager to see if they really could reduce my 5km PB time. So, I decided to go out early Tuesday morning while it was still cool.

I felt crap when I got up. I didn’t think about abandoning, but I did think “remember this feeling for the next time you’re feeling crap, in case you ace it”. The weather was pretty good: nice and cool but there was also a strong headwind on the finishing straight.

I jogged up there but had to come down to a walk on Clarendon Road because the shoes were really digging into my feet. As I reached the top, it eased off a bit, and I figured it was going to hurt a lot anyway, so I might as well give it a go. After a few minutes sit down in the park, I counted down from 10 and set off.

My first kilometre came in at 4:08. After that, I had to back off a little as my chest started to burn. My previous PB was 22:06, so even on a great day, sub-21 was unlikely. Therefore, anything near 4:12 was acceptable. I settled in around the 4:20s, which I was fine with as even a 22:30 would show I could still run at around my best.

As each kilometre went by, where my watch said I was and where I knew the parkrun markers would be, drifted apart. I had specifically turned GLONASS on, as well as GPS, to get a more accurate reading but it was to no avail.

As I fit the final straight I smashed into the wind and felt like I was sprinting while simultaneously feeling like I was slowing down. I crossed roughly where the parkrun finish line is at 21:06, although I had to keep running to 21:29 until my watch registered 5km.

21:06

Which was one was correct? I’m going with the official parkrun course, which I assume they have carefully measured. It was a clear day, though, so there should have been a good satellite signal.

After the run, I collapsed on the grass and took 5-10 minutes before I could get up and walk again. Based on the parkrun line time, I was exactly 60 seconds faster than my previous PB. At 4%, the shoes would give me 53 seconds. That means I was the other 7 seconds of improvement. Or at 5%, 67 seconds, in which case I lost 7 seconds. But either way, my fast running is still in good shape. Of course, it is easier without the crowds, too.

And that’s the story of how I got up before 9am for the first time since the lockdown started.

Weymouth parkrun

Saturday, September 28th, 2019 | Sport

Our holiday in Weymouth gave me a chance to do some parkrun tourism. I wondered whether it would be incredibly busy with 2,700 athletes descending in the town for IRONMAN. However, it turns out most of them were too serious to do a parkrun the day before.

The course is a mini loop through the trees of Lodmoor park before and out and back that goes to the far side and then back to the loop. The sun was shining, and once you hid from the coastal wind, it was hot.

Everyone was friendly, and it was an enjoyable run.

Parkrun Day: The Film

Thursday, August 22nd, 2019 | Sport, Video

Last week, when Hyde Park Harriers took on Leeds parkruns, I took my GoPro along to document the trip. Here is the film I made.

Parkrun Day

Wednesday, August 21st, 2019 | Sport

Every year, Hyde Park Harriers try to take on all of the parkuns in Leeds in a single day. This has become more and more of a challenge as new parkruns start. By this year, 2019, there are now nine of them. With two more starting soon, I have no idea what we will do next year. Possibly a multi-day event.

Having so many parkruns means the distance this year was up to 45km. Anything longer than 42.2km is technically an ultramarathon. 45km is pretty much the easiest ultramarathon you can possibly do, especially as you get a break when driving between them. Or so I thought. It turns out that having a break just gives your legs a chance to seize up.

Roundhay

We started bright and early at 7:30am. Ed Sheran had taken over most of the park so we had to forgo the regular parkrun route and do two laps of the lake instead. Nobody was sad to miss the long drag of the hill up to the mansion in favour of a beautiful view of the lake. It was sunny on the near side and rained on the far side.

Potternewton

By Potternewton, I was already feeling it. Bad times only 5km in! I wanted to pace myself so I walked up some of the hills. Meanwhile, Marcos Angel Valero Palacios came sprinting past me to take a course record of 15:59.

Temple Newsam

I had not packed a lot of food as I only decided to come for it at the last minute and had not had a chance to stock up, so by Temple Newsam I was hungry. I grabbed a coke, a sausage roll and a caramel shortbread from the cafe. The sun was out in full force by Temple Newsam, and Amy and Paul made a guest appearance.

Rothwell

The sun continued to beat down at Rothwell so I took a quick break to suncream up. The tarmac was starting to pound my legs by this point, so I was pleased to have grass to run on for most of it. How easy was everyone else taking it? Toby and Rich lapped me at this one.

Middleton Woods

Ah, the sweet shade of the woods. I felt good at Middleton, at least for the first three kilometres. I was still walking up some fo the hills but was running everything else. After the run, we had lunch on the bike cafe. A cheeseburger and chips went down well, accompanied by two bottles of orange juice and another can of coke.

Cross Flatts

It has cooled down a little by Cross Flatts and we dispatched the course without too much trouble. I felt no ill effects from having stuffed my face.

Bramley

By Bramley, I was tired but feeling good. I had finished both my bidons by this point, so we went to the shop to reload. The ground was a bit soggy when I moved off the tarmac and onto the grass.

Armley

This one was always going to be a challenge because it was so deep in but not quite at the end. We took it really steady so it didn’t hurt too much.

Woodhouse Moor

Ah, the end! I was excited to arrive here and we were joined by a few other Harriers. I went hard to try and put in a good time, but the fatigue meant that a “good time” was still 31 minutes. After crossing the finish line, I would say I felt amazing, but I mostly felt sick. That’s pretty standard with anything over three hours, though.

Conclusion

I can’t believe I made it. Eight others also claimed all of the runs, and while Greg missed Roundhay, he did the most work out of all of us as he cycled between each one. Thank you to Toby for organising it and Ellie for keeping me company at the back.

I’ll see you all next year… for one of the parkuns ;).

Temple Newsam’s 300th Parkrun

Sunday, December 30th, 2018 | Sport

Yesterday, Temple Newsam held their 300th Parkrun. With it being a big round number, I decided to head across to test my legs.

It’s been a year since I’ve run Temple Newsam. The last one I did, which was my course PB, was part of the New Year’s Day double at the start of 2018 before I had started my triathlon training in earnest. So, the 27:12 I set there was inevitably going to fall.

In the end, I ran:

23:17

Really happy with that. I’ve only gone sub-23 twice at Woodhouse Moor, so once you factor in the hills of Temple Newsam, that feels like an excellent result. I knew I wasn’t running quite as fast as when I was marathon training, but I’m not far off.

It wasn’t much bigger than usual: 199 runners in total. They did have a photographer there, though, so at the start, I sprinted up the front to be in the photo. And, as you can see below, I made it! (Light blue Go Tri t-shirt on the far left, in case you can’t spot me). Thanks to ‎Phil Bland‎ for taking the photos!